Some of the most famous and traditional English sporting events take place in June, so get out your best outfit, dust off your binoculars and get ready for some strawberries and cream as we guide you through two of our favourites.
The Wimbledon Championships are the worlds oldest tennis championships and the only major tournament still played on grass. The Championships take place over two weeks in midsummer and have been held at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in Wimbledon, south-west London since 1877. The championships commence in June and culminate in the famous finals 2 weeks later in July. The tournament is world-famous as a very British event with strawberries and cream and champagne as the traditional refreshments. The British royal family are big fans and the famous Centre Court has a royal box which is used by the family throughout the tournament.
- Date: 23rd June – July 2013
- Website: theaa.com/wimbledon
Ticketing for the event is obtained in a number of ways,
- applying by public ballot (now closed for 2013),
- online through ticketmaster.co.uk the day before play
- Wimbledon is one of the few major sporting events where you can queue on site for tickets on the day of play.
These methods of ticket purchase and the adult prices ranging from £8 – £130 make it very accessible, particularly if you are happy to watch play on large screens in the grounds to soak up the atmosphere.
Nearest Tubes are Wimbledon and Southfields on the District Line. Nearest Overground rail is Wimbledon on the London Waterloo line. During the tournament shuttle buses are run or the stations are a 15-20 minute walk
Henley Royal Regatta has been held every year since 1839, with the exception of the two World Wars. It is held at the Oxfordshire town of Henley-on-Thames and was originally a single afternoon event put on by the mayor with fun fair attractions but is now a 5 day serious amateur rowing event with qualifying races held in the weeks leading up to the main regatta, because of the over subscription.
The event is also still a very social occasion with the Stewards Enclosure open to members and guests only, where a strict dress code is enforced. The Regatta Enclosure is open to the general public and children of all ages are welcome with children of 14 and under gaining free entry with a paying adult. There is no dress code but many people get into the spirit by wearing blazers and other rowing apparel as well as summer dresses and hats.
- Date: 3rd-7th July 2013
- Ticket price: £17 – £20 for Regatta Enclosure
- Website: hrr.co.uk
Rowing at Henley
As Henley was established before any formal rowing bodies it has its own rules and operates over a longer course of 1 mile 550 yards (212 metres longer than most rowing courses of 2000 metres) with only two boats per race. These are started every 5 minutes to allow for the packed schedule of up to 90 races in a day. This makes for a really exciting event for spectators!
Getting to Henley-on Thames
The roads are extremely busy approaching Henley during the Regatta and its advisable to seek access via public transport. However there are car parks available and its available to purchase labels (tickets) well in advance.
There are extra bus and train services during the regatta. The rail links are on the Great Western line from London Paddington.